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When we peak perform, our ego dissolves! Huh?

Ever notice when you really “hit it out of the park,” when you perform beyond your expectations and sense you had a peak performance, you have a hard time recalling the specifics? In fact, “you” get lost in the moment as time stands still and “you” find yourself in the zone?

Where does our ego go when we experience a peak performance?

We don’t know. It turns out “they” (you know, “the scientific people”) studied this in labs and have proven that when folks have a peak performance, they don’t think of “themselves” at all. Instead, they leave their egos at the door. Peak performance, it turns out, happens without our ego present. Or at least, there seems to be no need for it. The ego just doesn’t surface. Maybe a better metaphor: it dissolves to allow room for our peak performances.

Holy moley! The ego dissolves during peak performance?

Yup.

What does that mean, really?

It means that when we make sure our ego is present and we pay a lot of tribute to our ego and the ego of others, the chances of us or them having a peak performance are slim to none. In other words, peak performance wants to happen without our ego being present, or at least, when peak performance happens, our ego is not present. Cool, right?

So what else does it mean?

Another way of saying all this is that to peak perform at work we must get rid of our ego! At least, we must calm it down so it doesn’t get in the way. Ego-be-gone. Poof!

Poof!? There goes my ego? Are you crazy?

That’s about right. I’m crazy. Or maybe I just want to see more peak performance in the work place. So, next time you really want to peak perform, think about nothing. In true Yoda form, “do or do not… there is no try.” Mostly, feel the force and deep six your ego. Who knows, you might just watch your performances go way up. Could be.

So why all the pop business books about ego this, personality that?

Marketing and sales I guess. When was the last time an ego fest or a personality party really got down to the brass tacks of getting things done? Think back to your best performances, I bet you had a sense you were doing something for more than yourself, right? Or at least for that moment, it felt that way. Strange, huh?

So what are you saying about our love for the cult of personality at work?

The concept of personality typing and meeting ego needs may actually hurt, not help, our ability to consistently perform at peak levels. That’s all I am saying. More to the point, I have a hunch that by focusing on personality types and ego assessments, we may well be taking ourselves farther away from, not closer to, our peak experiences at work. Oh darn.

What are you really saying?

The gist of this post is that if you want more peak performances at work– from yourself and those you work with– do more things to reduce and dissolve your egos.

Well… let me stew on this one for a while.

Take some time, let me know how it goes!

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